What to Do Before Your Husband Gets Home

Stay-at-home moms, have you ever wondered what to do before your husband gets home?

Stay-at-home moms, you know the situation all-too well. You’re home with your children all day long and life just happens.

You change diapers. You get breakfast and lunch. You get the mail. You try to complete a load of laundry. You kiss boo-boos and read stories and retrieve out-of-reach toys and comfort wailing sobs and clean a whole bunch of spit-up.

Before you know it, you look at the clock and your husband should be on his way home.

Once he gets home, he’ll ask the same polite questions as every day: How was your day? What did you do?

You’ll look around, see your disaster of a house, think that you accomplished a whole bunch of nothing … and you won’t know how to answer.

  • Even though your husband knows how horrid your child’s temper tantrums are, calming a meltdown doesn’t exactly sound like much of an accomplishment. (Trust me, though, it IS.)
  • Grocery shopping may be a huge triumph – especially if you’re taking your young children along with you! – and that, along with naptimes and feedings, is truly the biggest part of your day. But it doesn’t sound like much. (It IS a big part!)
  • And you may be ecstatic that your potty-training toddler only had two accidents today. (That IS something to celebrate!) But no one else is quite as excited as you.

Those things don’t always feel like much, in the grand “what did you do” scope of your day. Even though they truly are much in the life of a mother. (And in the lives of your children!) Even though your husband truly appreciates what you do for your family.
Stay-at-home moms, have you ever wondered what to do before your husband gets home?

Appearing like you’re getting something done

To create the appearance that you did get something done around the house during your day – and to create a haven for your husband, yourself and your children I have a suggestion that’s worked for me in my home.

All morning long, as my children play and learn and just enjoy being kids, we have a great time together – and we don’t care about what our house looks like. If toys and crafts and books are all scattered, it’s OK.

BUT. (And this is a big but.) After lunch, before it’s time for resting, we all stop and clean up. We know my husband is in a much better mood if he comes home after a long day of work to a clean house. (Total house of chaos? Totally out-of-sorts husband.) And I’m in a much better mood if my house is picked up.

After years spent focusing on my babies and work-at-home job and leaving the house looking as frazzled as I felt, I realized the very quick clean-up was a practical way to show my husband I was thinking of him and that I appreciate him, because I do. (Remembering to tell him that I appreciate him every now and then works wonders, too!)

Plus, by tidying up, I ended up appreciating our home more, instead of wanting to scream over how rough my day was. Bonus.

Stay-at-home moms, have you ever wondered what to do before your husband gets home?

By doing a quick clean together, I’m able to teach my children how to pick up after themselves. Our house is picked up once everyone settles down for an afternoon rest. And it stays picked up. (If we haven’t finished it all together, I quickly finish.)

    • I make sure lunch dishes are washed.
    • I make sure the mail is sorted and on the table. (By pitching junk mail as soon as it comes in my house, it helps cut back on paper clutter.)
    • I make sure baskets of clean laundry – even if they’re not folded – are taken to my bedroom to be folded and put away later.

    When my husband comes home, I want him to see a clean kitchen, clean living room, and clean dining room. It’s what I would love to see if I came home after a long day of work. The floors may not be swept, and the windows aren’t sparkling clean, but the clutter is gone. Everything looks put together.

    It looks like I’ve accomplished something in my day.

    If my husband gets home a little later than usual, I have already started supper for our usual dinnertime. If he’s on time, he likes to do the cooking. (I like when he does that, too!)

    Stay-at-home moms, have you ever wondered what to do before your husband gets home?

    One of my secrets to success

    In order to do this and to keep my sanity – and a clean home – with young children after naptime, I use the TV as a babysitter.

    Our children’s daily screentime is after their afternoon rest – that’s it. It helps to keep our home clean and it gives me some quiet time to work in the kitchen. When I’ve tried to get dinner ready without it, I end up having to break up arguments and wrangle my kiddos.

    Is televised babysitting ideal? Of course not. But after trying different alternatives, I’ve found that it works well for my family.

    Creating a peaceful atmosphere

    With my picked up house and supper preparation, I’ve stopped feeling guilty when my husband comes home and asks about my day. I may have faced the same challenges as usual, but instead of looking like I got absolutely nothing accomplished, I look and feel like I did something – even if it was only dishes and a quick clean-up.

    Plus, by doing a quick clean-up of a few rooms before my husband gets home, I’m able to add a peaceful atmosphere while showing my husband my love in an incredibly tangible and practical way.

    Stay-at-home moms, have you ever wondered what to do before your husband gets home?

    I’m curious … if you’re a stay-at-home mom, how have you decided what to do before your husband gets home?

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  1. I do the same thing, a quick clean up of the living area and kitchen… But my husband has a super flexible work schedule, so I never know when he comes home. But I try to pick up before supper and that seems to work out well… A couple weeks ago we had a bunch of friends over so between 6 kids under 6 they turned the house upside down in 20 minutes and my husband came in unexpectedly and he was confused. So I took it as a compliment, because the house looks like this almost every day at some point but he is not used to see it like that :)

      1. One thing I try to do is have fresh flowers on the table or kitchen island on Friday just for the weekend. Just the $5 bouquet.

    1. Exactly! When our children were little, I made it a point to involve them in picking up the clutter before “Daddy” gets home. This way my husband can relax when he comes home. One day I made it a point NOT to pick up the house and the look on his face was priceless.

    2. Who cares what your husband thinks! This sounds like an article from Good Housekeeping circa 1950. Do you ladies also feel that you should remain quiet when he talks because what he has to say is more important?! Your work is more important than his ! He should help clean up when he gets home. It’s a joint effort, the same as if you worked outside the home. Why why why do women continue to give men so much power?!?!we are the ones who run this world but are too meek to take credit for it. Ugh.

      1. Wow Lillian! Who cares? YOU should care what your husband thinks! My husband certainly doesn’t like to finish a days work and come home to a destroyed house. That’s what he gets, often, and it stresses him out. Had I been out at work all day I wouldn’t want to come in and immediately tidy a mess I had no part in making. Does that mean he should come in and put his feet up? No. But when you know what will easily put someone in a good or bad mood, love says you make the effort to do it. And as for remaining quiet when he talks, yes we should. Because it is polite to remain quiet and listen when anyone is talking. Not because what he has to say is more important, but because I would like him to listen to what I want to say in return. Manners cost nothing.

        1. There’s something to be said for RESPECT. I respect my husband and he respects me as well. Having his dinner on the table when he comes in isn’t his requirement, it’s my way of caring for him. Keeping the house and yards clean while babysitting two grandkids isn’t a law he laid down, it’s a way of saying thank you for all you do for me. I guess it’s all about how you see things. I prefer to see my husband as the head of the household!

        2. I think the house is everyone’s responsibility. Do I try and clean up and have the house cleaner by time he gets home? Sure and not for his approvals but so we both can just enjoy spending time as a family instead. But he helps. He does the dishes and we both do the laundry and we both cook dinner together. I bet it you want him to feel good when he comes home but raising kids is the most important job ever and a house can wait. I love a clean house for me not to appease my hub. We are a team, I’m a Stay at home Mom by an in house maid. Love my husband but if he wants a spotless house he cane help make it so.

      2. so you expect your husband to pay for everything AND take care of your house? wow… you sound incredibly selfish. the point of being a SAHM is that your job is to keep the house in order and take care of your kids. It would be different if you both worked, then yes, it would be a joint effort. if that’s how you act in your relationship I wouldn’t expect it to last long if I were you. it’s called love and respect for eachother. he loves and respects his family by working his ass off every day, you could love and respect him back by doing the same for him. feminism is absolute toxicity.

        1. My husband is a big wig for our city’s Target, and sometimes has long, hard days of retail. People are crazy! And we’ve all tries to talk a retail worker into giving us the sale price that was wrongly marked, admit it. Haha! He makes the money, I stay home with our two year old and keep house. I cook and clean and raise the baby and I love it! Hubby deserves so much more than I can offer, but if I can at least present him with a clean house and clean kid when he gets home, he’ll appreciate it. It’s the least I can do. I absolutely adore being a domestic, but that’s just me. He’s giving me the life I’ve always dreamed of, I can give him a tidy house.

        2. The end of this comment is asinine. Please attempt to read and educate yourself.
          The reason you can vote is feminism. The battle for equal pay is feminism. Women and girls having the choice of a career is feminism.

          1. We also had to be cleaned up before my dad got home. My mom also taught me to never depend on a man and always able to support myself.

          2. I agree, l see feminism as being the right of ever to use their talents and to flourish. The Bible was inspired by God, but written by humans who were just as fallible as us and who were people of their time. 1st century attitudes to women were deeply patriarchal ,so we need to take that into account. We have moved on and accept that our values are different now. That’s why I look on the bible as a guidebook, not a set of rules to be obeyed. A guide book gives suggestions, but it doesn’t lay down the law

            1. I agree with you on the part that this opinion is old fashioned. My husband gets done with work and asks, “How can I help?” (ie. take the kids or clean).

              But I’d like to clarify one thing. You cannot call yourself a Christian if you believe that the Bible has human written errors. That’s not biblical and goes against scripture.

              If you are going to call yourself a Christian, then you need to be a Christ follower. That would mean that you believe the Bible was written by God using human hands, that it is infallible and without error. The Bible project just put out a new series on understanding biblical literature. The founders of The Bible Project are Hebrew scholars and can read, write, and speak Hebrew.

            2. The Bible is literally Gods word and curse is promised to those who change it. None of what is written is “out of date”. If you read everything within the context of when it was written and to whom you will recognize that it is Gods living and lasting word. God is the same yesterday, today and forever. Just because society has changed does not mean that God has or our attitude towards what He expects of us. Don’t forget women held many places of honor and power in Gods word as well. Gods direction to men is to love their wives as their own selves. It’s stressed and expounded up and repeated. Wives are to submit ina godly manner to their husbands. When husbands are loving their wives as themselves, it’s easy for the wife to submit. When either is out of order things don’t work.

        3. I know this is wasted time because you’ve clearly lost your mind! First of all, it’s called Stay at home MUM! You are not his housemaid. Our responsibilities are nurturing and raising the kids and because we do it from home, yeah, we do a little more household, but it’s not the main priority. You said, “if you were both working it would be a different thing”… So you don’t see raising kids as work? And just because our ridiculous society doesn’t pay motherhood the money it deserves a mother doesn’t contribute to a household? You could also argue, Hey you’ve only been sitting in an office all day drinking coffee while I’ve raised human beings, the dishwashers on you.
          Which I wouldn’t do either because I actually do respect my husband, but unlike all of your husbands, he respects me back and sees me raising his kids as an actual contribution, even if paid poorly. Contribution isn’t just financial. Seriously, arrive in this century, lady. It’s pathetic.

      3. I admit: I read this article out of curiosity – to check if it’s really that old fashioned as the headline suggested it is, and then I looked again at the date it was published…
        Can’t believe women still think that way in 2018!
        No wonder there’s still huge difference between men and women salaries.
        There is so much more work to be done in this matter.

        1. Sorry Orly, but I do not think there is any correlation between picking up the home God has blessed our family with before my husband walks through the door and the possible difference in salaries between men and women. Who doesn’t love coming home to a clean house!

        2. Y’all. Listen. Old fashioned mindsets aside- a marriage is a partnership. And you do kind things for your spouse because you love them and because you want to help them. It’s called kindness. For example. My husband knows that i absolutely HATE doing laundry. So he does the laundry. It doesn’t bother him as much. He knows it makes me happy. I know that my husband goes into panic mode when the house is a mess. So i keep things tidy (or as tidy as i can with a two year old). We take turns making dinner. That’s how we arrange our lives together. Because we respect each other. Because we love each other. I work really hard every day, and it sucks that i don’t collect a paycheck. My husband gives me a big chunk of his paycheck because he thinks i should get paid too.

          Being kind to your life partner should NOT be seen as an old fashioned mindset. Being kind to your husband should NOT be frowned upon by feminists. It’s called teamwork. And if more people worked this way with the people around them, the world would be a better place.

        3. I get what you mean, but I also see their side. I was the parent who worked for two years when our boys were toddlers. My husband stayed home. His job was HARD, and so was mine. It totally stressed me out to walk in the door to a disaster of a house. Did it need to be perfect? No. But I did need the couch cushions on the couch, blankets picked up, and just a quick pick up before I walked in the door. I don’t think that was too much to ask. My husband is now the one who works outside of the home, and he could seriously care less about how the house looks when he comes home, but I do try to pick it up a little before he walks in the door. Just like I helped with house work when he was the stay at home parent, he helps with housework now that I am the stay at home parent. It works for us. I think both of us having done the stay at home parent thing gave us some perspective on how the others day could be going. It gave us empathy for each other and allowed us to see what areas we can help each other.

        4. What does it matter to you how other woman want to live their lives? Woman need to love and embrace one another rather than judge them for everything.

        5. Wow a sensible normal person here amongst the odd women stuck in last century. Thank God I don’t know anyone who is like this. How embarrassing.

        6. I can’t believe the Stepford Wives are real in today’s society. You really just want to be pampered and put on a shelf (and taken care of) because you are nothing without a man. This type of behavior sets us back 50 years; women have worked so hard to have rights. I am beyond belief.

          1. I do want to add, my home was always immaculate, working full-time, because “I” wanted it that way. Not because I felt I owed something to someone. My husband helped around the house constantly. I never had to ask for anything. What needed to be done, he jumped in. We had everything put away, together, before we went to bed. That is what a relationship is all about. It’s a joint effort.

      4. Because of such disrespectful understanding to husbands (as some have posted) the world is going towards destruction bc these mothers then raise sons that grow up to be unresponsible for the world in which they live in.

      5. You and your husband are partners in your family. Partners don’t have to have the same responsibilities. You and your husband are given the privilege of deciding for your family. What is your idea of a good relationship? What kind of example do you want to give your kids for a loving relationship? When your kids come home from school, will you ignore them and not have a snack ready or their laundry done because you don’t want to feel like you need to serve anyone? When they come home from college, won’t you make them feel loved by cooking their favorite food or having their room ready? It is good for children at the end of the day to have a meal at the table in a relatively neat, calm environment and to have helped as they are able to create that. It helps them to learn that relationships take work and sacrifice and that family time is special. How many people work at jobs they don’t particularly enjoy to provide a home for their family? What is wrong with doing jobs you may feel are beneath you in order to make that home worth living in?

      6. I have worked full time at a labor intensive job for years but am a stay at home dad and love to make my wife happy, a clean home to come home to and dinner on the table is a great way to do that. Not about Male or female, just about helping out and making your significant other happy.

      7. If you don’t care what your husband thinks.. that’s not a very good marriage. You don’t do it because you HAVE to. You do it because you love and respect him and because you WANT to. But sure… if you want to sit around all day in your own mess and then subject your husband to it when he gets home from work where he earns money to support you and your family.. don’t be too surprised when he stops putting in the effort for YOU. marriage is a partnership and you get out what you put in. So sad seeing women so defensive and taking anything like this as a sign of control. It’s not. It’s a choice. We are women who choose to build our hunsbands up because we love them, and they love us equally in return. Stop with the Us vs them mentality.

      8. If we are thet ones who run the world, then why should we expect our hard working husbands to come home to a messy house and still expects himto help us with household stuff. And we are home all day. Simply put, if you can organize your household on your own as a woman, you coulf never run the world. And factually, only God can run this world. Lots of love and blessings to all women who respect their hard working husbands.

      9. With all do respect. Yes i see what you are saying and i couldnt help but reply when i saw your post. My husband and I have three boys and i am a stay at mom. I believe that relationships are different than they were back then but I have respect for a man that works there ass off all day and blieve that he should have a hot meal and peacefulness when he gets home. Peacefullness that only his wife can create for him if he loves her. That is what love does. Its not the 1950s but chivalry is not dead. Especially if you have a good man that takes good care of you. When you find that mam you will both do whatever it takes to partner up even if it means you do a little house work and cook him something for dinner after he has worked all day to support your household. It not giving power to a man. Its showing him you love him for being a man and taking care if his responsibility. When a man provides for his family thats what makes him feel like a man. Its a fact and if you arent praising him or showing that you are grhateful then hes never gonna feel as if hes doing anything right for you. You dont have to care or listen but i felt it on my heart to give my opinion anyways. Have a nice day

      10. It’s not giving them power . Many women are afraid to be SAHMs or home makers even if that’s what they want because of that kind of judgment.
        Before having kids I worked full time, my husband worked from home part-time and when I got home from work everything was clean and tidy, supper was ready and I felt like I could relax, now that the tables are turned I like being able to do the same. The is nothing wrong with a woman wanting to make her house feel relaxing for her spouse.

    3. I have to agree with Sham on this one. Probably 4 out of 5 days of the week my house is completely clean and I get through the day and I am like Yesss I did it again, but then theres that one day. My husband is so understanding. He knows that if the house is a disaster then it was a bad day with 2 screaming toddlers. A marriage is 50/50. He works and I work although it may be with my 2 little bundles of love. I also think of it as an income, because I’m saving us $2000 a month on daycare. We both work and we both dont sit down at night until the kids are taken care of and the dishes.

  2. Loved the tips! I love when my Husband walks through the door and says, “This place smells great!” or “Wow! It looks awesome in here!” rather than, “So what did you do today?” lol! I’m always looking to put a smile on his face when he first walks in rather than open-mouthed horror, so I loved reading this today! I’m gonna go pick up some clutter before he walks in the door! :-D

    1. Isn’t it so much better to see our husbands walk through the door smiling … and all because we spent a little time tidying up!?

      1. Well I have a home daycare that takes over the basement of my home. I have always been organized and it amaze my parents when they pick up their kids that my house is so nest n organized. I believe in and this has always been my stance that when your done with it, put it away. I do admit that from time to time it gets a little messy but timing and organization is everything. When the kiddies go down for a nap I will wash the dishes n tidy up the toys n on assigned days I will do some laundry. In my case my husbands loves to cook. His day ends around 3:00 p.m. When he comes in he starts dinner. It’s teamwork as well. Have you ever notice that on tv all houses are so clean and it makes you feel that everyone should be so neat. Yes in TvLand or in my case, I fell I have OCB.

      2. I think this article is more about instilling a routine into your daily life than doing your husband’s bidding. I have been a working mother and a SAHM, now I am a work from home mom. After my long days behind a computer screen, I want to see a clean, picked up home. So, I have a routine that keeps myself and everyone else in my household sane.
        I agree the title isn’t the most harrowing for women. But we can all agree that taking care of our family is usually a common goal among women and mothers, no matter how we choose to do so.

  3. This really spoke to me. To often I am running around all day cleaning up behind my kids when I should really sit down and play with them. I will start to implement clean up time between 4 to 5 where the house is clean when my husband gets home. Plus an hour of central cleaning is probably better than cleaning all day endlessly and getting nothing accomplished. One thing that I am starting to implement when my husband comes home is playing worship music in the background. This really helps set the tone of the atmosphere in my house for the evening.

  4. Some good tips, thank you! Some of this sounds like what I have done on occasion, but should make a habit of. I sometimes–read “not as much as I should”–try to get dressed in nicer clothes aka an outfit that is not stained or just comfy-frumpy, and fix my hair. It helps me feel better and, from what he has said, he appreciates it too.
    Thanks again!

    1. I love how you make a point of dressing in nicer clothes and fixing your hair. That can make a big difference! On some of my rougher days when I don’t have a chance to get ready in the morning, I make sure to hop in the shower by the time my husband comes home. :)

  5. Job I do every day as a home maker before hubby gets home, empty, dishwasher wash morning dishes by hand if I bake everyone a treat for afternoon tea.
    I put on a load of washing hand it in or out depending on the weather.
    I study on Monday and Wednesdays when my youngest is at 4 year old kinder.
    I clean the entire house properly on a Tuesday when oldest is at school and youngest is watching the i pad. I let him help if he wants to help vacuum.
    I cook home prepared meals from scratch on Tuesdays and Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays.
    Friday night I get a night of cooking and we have take away.
    On Mondays and Wednesdays we have left overs from the freezer something I prepared on the weekend and made a double portion of previously.
    I do dress up even to do school drop off and pick ups so I look like I may have gone to work today.
    I love to wear perfume every day. I keep make up for days of the week I go to work.
    I do the same as the lady in the article. I do clean up once a day before hubby gets home the kids toy area.
    When they were both home and younger I would make them do it with me.
    I always get up 15 mins to 30 mins before my kids to have a daily shower and breakfast in peace.

    1. Reading your comments have inspired me like I can do this. It’s the self motivation I need. I feel I find my self complaining to much and less enjoying our boys they are older no toddlers, 15&14 years sometimes I feel like my husband doesn’t care much, but I know he does we need to work on it communication. I feel like blah oh well he doesn’t help. When he walks through the door and says what’s for dinner after I just got home from work, I want to be a loving wife but times i just feel like uuuugh!

  6. Yes the TV entertainment for kids is a problem. I suggest to download lots of kid series. Most of them are many seasons with 10 minutes episodes. Maybe instead of commercials they could do some other activity and then watch another episode or another kid series. I really really love Steven universe, clarence, gravity falls, adventure time (most of them are from cartoon network). I hope you check it out. Blessings

    1. We have a rule to either stick to PBS Kids or watch DVDs we’ve borrowed from the library … I love that they can learn, be entertained, and not be exposed to commercials!

      1. We got rid of cable so watch “tv” using our antenna for basic channels and recently got a fire stick so we can now access PBS and Disney Junior by the episode commercial free any time of day in our living room which has been such a blessing. My 3 year old gets to watch cartoons while having breakfast before preschool and then again in the late afternoon before Daddy gets home so I can clean and get dinner ready. :)

  7. I love what I feel is at the basis of this article- a mutual respect for each other as spouses and partners. I always do a quick clean before my husband comes home, and he does the same for me when I am away. We tend to our home as partners.

    Right now, I am in graduate school and an intern, and he is doing 100% of the providing. In turn, I do the “small things” that allow the house to be super peaceful when he gets home. It’s a trade off.

    Congratulations for finding what worked for your marriage! It is a difficult thing to do but once you find the right groove, it makes the world of difference.

  8. I love this! I will have to implement this! Something I always do before my husband comes home is freshen up. I’ll change out of spit up clothes, take my hair out of a messy bun, and put on some make up. I know he will love me always, but it matters to me that I look good for him. I always have dinner ready, as well.

  9. I really appreciated this…the ideas, and how real you are. I also use the TV (Netflix for us) as a babysitter on a regular basis and I appreciate knowing I’m not alone! I really appreciate your honesty and the encouragement. :)

    1. It really is so much better than when I was younger. The children are not only entertained but are learning shapes and colors and letters and how to treat others and even are prompted to get up and follow along with a physical activity! :)

  10. I periodically ask my husband what 3 things HE would like to have tidy when he gets home. After years of stressing over getting the dishes done before he gets home, I found out he is much more concerned with the entry way being swept clean and shoes off the floor. Shock to me! But his desires change from time to time, as does our living location, so I do check in now and again to see what new items bring him the most peace after a long day.

    1. How funny about the entry way! Good thing you checked to see what he’d rather you spend your time on! :) I love that you’re willing to see what would bring him the most peace … and I’m sure your husband loves your caring thoughtfulness, too.

  11. This sounds a lot like what I do – affirming that I’m on the right track! :)

    I also try to just do playtime in the morning, without focusing much on housework. Lately, I’ve been told to “take it easy” for twin pregnancy so honestly, in the afternoon I don’t do much housework either. ;)

    We also save TV for after rest time, usually after our afternoon snack around 3pm. My 16 month old still won’t sit and watch TV much (especially since we don’t have an actual TV so she just wants to swipe at the computer/iPad), but it does help my older daughter to have that alone time and I don’t have to focus on her quite so much. We also do mostly the PBS Kids app or DVDs, or a few shows on Netflix.

    My husband is usually home at 5:15 and usually the 4:00 time onward can be my hardest time of day. But, we’ve fallen into a pretty good system where at 4:00 we stop what we’re doing (or pause TV if my daughter is still watching – she gets 1-3 shows a day depending on how well she did with cooperating at rest time). We go on a quick walk to check our mailbox and maybe walk to the end of the block, so it’s usually about 4:30 when we get home. I’ll get the kids to help me clean up (which is mostly me cleaning up, but at least they’re not getting anything out new) and then I start dinner while they watch an iPad show – this is the one time of day where I actually strap my 1 year old into her high chair so she’ll watch for 20 minutes or so while I prepare dinner.

    I do know that my husband really does appreciate when the house is tidied up and dinner is almost ready, so I try to focus on those. We put our kids to bed pretty early, so if those aren’t done, we end up delaying bedtime, and it throws off the whole evening.

    The one last thing I try to do is to prepare myself mentally and to greet him with a hug and a kiss at the door. I actually write this into my to-do list. :) Not that I don’t want to – just that it can be easy to get preoccupied. Our door is generally locked and he always knocks, so that helps, as it gives me an “excuse” to go to the door and focus on him, rather than just focusing on finishing dinner/chores/etc.

    Of course, some days it’s not like this – I might be too tired or have a headache or something – but those are the goals!!

  12. Honestly? I always try to keep the house picked up, laundry in check and kids relatively clean, but my solution to “What did you do today?” in a tone that conveys that I did not do “anything” was to leave him with the kids for 7 hours on a Saturday. When I returned, I asked him if a tornado hit. He then proceeded to compliment my ability to keep the house from being demolished each and every day, and still (usually) manage to get dinner on the table.

  13. This article is one I’d expect to find in the library archives dated August, 1950. Being a husband, and soon to be parent, under no circumstance will I ever expect my wife to go above and beyond to please me. I know and trust my wife that she is using her time through out the day to be productive. If she doesn’t have time to clean up before I get home then I will clean up and take care of the kids and give her a break.

    1. Thank you Ben! I too thought this was an outdated article and waited for the “PSYCH!!!!!” at the end. Picking up the house is great, but doing it to please your husband so he has peace when he comes home – come on now…

        1. It’s a sign of the times, indeed, that a simple post about doing something because your spouse will appreciate it is scorned and considered dated by so many. Divorce, however, is a modern trend.

          Mother Theresa said, “Do small things with great love.” My husband understands how busy I am, but cleaning to show him appreciation gives me added incentive and makes me happier to do housework, too.

          1. I know my comment is late but omg… nasty comments. She is a SAHM and her job is to take care of the children and the home.

            There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to please her husband…and create more harmony with having a tidy home.

            It’s not old fashioned and doesn’t make her any lesser. I truly do think that having one parent stay home at least part time is the best thing for the children and a marriage. More families should be so lucky!

          2. I completely agree with you. Respect is one of the foundations for a marriage that WANTS to last. Thank you for saying this. I also love your choice of quotation from Mother Teresa. :)

            1. I absolutely loved being a a stay at home wife for years and now that I have a son i love and care for as a SAHM i love it even more. My husband doesn’t come home to a perfect home or family but he knows that I have obviously had a rough day and he is just happy and proud i kept the baby alive and didn’t burn the house down lol I think that my generation is to focused on women can do everything a man can do but that is far from the truth…We are created to do what men can not. I didn’t get it when I was younger but do now and am not ashamed of the life i have been blessed with and husband who is blessed to be able to provide for our family. I submitted to him and I will till the end of time.

      1. Did you go out of your way for your husband while you were dating? Did you care how he felt about the way you looked? Why wouldn’t you continue doing that? My hubby adores me as I do him, I want him to be relaxed when he gets home, but when he asked what i did today, it’s me who puts a negative spin on it, not him. He’s my king and I want to make sure he knows it. Even if my day was awful I made sure he was and is my first thought. Kids grow up and go away, that’s what we hope for at least, where does that leave your marriage? I got up every morning with him to get him ready to leave, kissed and pushed out the door because i love him, it’s not antiquated it’s love. I haven’t put gas in my own car in years, i get in and it’s full like the gas fairy filled it. The day i got in it and the gas light was on i sent him a picture almost immediately I received a picture back of him eating his yogurt with his finger because I forgot the spoon (happens at 430 am) I laughed for hours, he wouldn’t have said a thing to me if I hadn’t moved first. Guess what, my oldest son thought like you and Ben, he said he’d never – his wife doesn’t need to – I didn’t marry for a maid, blah blah blah, divorce is final next month. My daughter in law asked how did you know we shouldn’t have married and I told her because she was girlfriend material not wife. I’m strong, self-sufficient and I’m a wife, I will make my man feel like he is the center of the universe, every single day (sometimes after I’ve thrown his wet towel at him that he left on my now ruined bedspread, he literally had to duck as he came in the front door). 27 years and one son left. then it’s no clothes allowed after 6 pm for the next 27 years as God intended. Love him like your dating him.

    2. Ad someone else pointed out, it’s a sign of respect that whichever parent is home does his/her best to make sure the house doesn’t look like a cyclone went through. As a mom who had to work outside the home most of my kids’ growing up years, if I’d come home night after night to a trashed house after my spouse had been home all day with however many kids there were, I would not have looked forward to getting home.

    3. I agree! As a work-from-home mom of two kids under two, I keep my house tidy when I can – and I do it for ME! My husband works all day, and when he comes home to two crying children, he understands that more likely than not this is what my day has been filled with. He’s understanding enough to know that I’m not lazy just because the house isn’t as tidy as it was when we were newlyweds. If I’m in yoga pants, he doesn’t ask, “so you didn’t feel like getting dressed today?” Instead, he calls me Sexy, and thanks me for all my hard work. I understand encouraging mutual respect between spouses, but unless a clean house in your spouse’s love language, I don’t understand why that one task needs to be of this much importance.

  14. My husband and I have taken turns staying home. And I can tell you it was wonderful to come home to things calm and picked up. He’s much more structured than I am. So when I was staying home and realized we never had that time of calm. Well it was because he had taken the time to do that for me. So I started to do the same. It shows the kids a different part of our day is about to start. It helps them start to be more calm also. And allows our family to spend time together in a peaceful environment. Yes some days get away from me… But it’s so much better when I can.

  15. I love this! I have been married 18 years (wow!) and we have 4 kids. My hubby world SUPER hard so that we have the luxury of me staying home. While my job is far from luxurious ???? It is really a sacrifice and a blessing that I get to stay home and be with our kids. I wouldn’t have it any other way. That being said if I did work outside of the home and came home to a hot mess EVERY DAY it would be hard to not think “man I wish just ONCE in a while things could look sort of orderly when I come home!” I know for a fact my hubby doesn’t care if he comes home to a crazy mess every day BUT he is SOOOO VERY GRATEFUL when I show him that I cared enough to tidy up and have some structure for when he comes in our home. Our sanctuary. A place where he can call the chaos of the outside world that he was just in, for our family. If it’s a hot mess every day (even though he is ok with a hot mess) it would be hard for ANYONE to feel that calm feeling when they came in. They would just feel the need to dig in and help and KEEP ON WORKING after a long day all ready. Is this an “out dated” concept? NO WAY!! Just a way to show love and mutual respect to each other. I think it’s amazing you blogged about it. Not once did you say it was the only way or the only right way. It’s your way! It’s a great way to show love (as i said) and people show and receive live differently in all kinds of families. I thank and applaud you for reminding not to tidy up and show my kids and my hubby how much I love them and our home by a small act of service.

    My mom once told me when I got married a little trick she used was to fill the sink with pine sol 15 min before my dad got home. She then did a quick pick up (just clutter) and drained the sink. With out fail my dad would walk in and soften at the site of a tidy home and it “smelled clean” too so it actually LOOKED cleaner to him. I giggled at that thought because sometimes the house in reality was actually messier than when he had left even AFTER her quick tidy job. With that little extra sense of smell he was able overlook some of the shortcomings of the day and STILL softened the edges of the chaotic world. I still use this fancy nose trick when my day gets away from me. I’m sure my hubby has walked in a time or two and thought “did she REALLY mop AROUND these big cases of water or Costco toilet paper”? I know for a fact though he loves that I took the time to at least TRY to make things look and SMELL clean for him!! ????

    Sorry for the soap box tirade! I just think there isn’t anything outdated about caring for your Hume and your spouse. Whether he goes to work or you do. It’s nice to come home to a tidy space. Nothing outdated about that at all.

    1. I hate when I see my typos!!! Gah!! Clumsy thumbs with auto correct!!! Oh well I think you get the gist!!! One line is bugging me though. The line where I thanked you for reminding me…it wasn’t supposed to say *NOT tidying up. It was supposed to say thank you for reminding ME to tidy up and show my family I love and respect them and our home.
      Thanks AGAIN for this reminder of love and commitment!!

  16. Love your post. I certainly let my boys watch TV when each was younger so I could get household chores accomplished. My oldest is now 21 y.o. Our entire family has very fond memories of the episodes we’ve seen of Thomas the Tank Engine. I love cooking so dinner on the table is not challenging for me. I don’t even mind laundry. I just really dislike the clutter that seems to grow out of nowhere if we aren’t diligent about keeping things put away. You are so smart to teach your children the importance of tidying up as part of a routine. It’s easy instead to just do it yourself and get it done! My husband and I share a lot of the chores but we each have a comfort level with certain jobs. It’s all about honoring your home and showing respect for each other in maintaining a peaceful and comfortable home.

  17. Love the tips, thanks! Especially the part about calming temper tantrums :) Don’t I know it!

  18. I LOVE this article. It is a much needed topic in today’s society. It is certainly not outdated. It is something I need to work on, except, I have a question. My hubby works nights, any ideas to make this work for me? (We have five children, 1-6 years old), no TV. When I worked, my husband kept a beautiful house, and his cooking is awesome. I have a lot of ways to move up, so any ideas would be helpful!!

    1. Hi Heidi! Thanks so much for your comment! If your husband works nights, could you pick up around the house after your kids go to bed and before you go to bed?

  19. We begin cleaning up about 3, I then let the kids play outside while I start supper & get everything in order for the evening. Chaos drives me crazy so after a busy day at work I’m sure my hubby just wants to relax with his favorite people for the evening :)

  20. I am a bit surprised that it is such a big deal to be ready for your husband to get home so he is
    happy.You are the one who is in the house and the thick of it.Yes sometimes it is
    possible to get things tidy, and sometimes not.
    I’m sure most husbands (mine included) really aren’t that bothered about a few toys and dushes.
    kids are clean happy and fed and cared for that’s whats important.
    It is 2016 not 1816!

  21. I also felt that some of this advice is a bit dated and sexist. My husband (and any other spouse who is attempting to play an important role in raising the kids) knows how I am spending the day and would never ask what I did all day long! It is important that all members of the household play a role in keeping the house tidy and making an effort to look good and be respectful and appreciative of one another, including the working spouse. More moor tangly, this is the example that you should be setting for your kids so that they will grow up with reasonable expectations about marriage and family life. it is not the responsibility of the stay at home spouse to assume all responsibility for home and child care and to worry about whether the working partner will be pleased with your efforts! this is a recipe for burnout and resentment that isn’t good for your marriage, your family or your personal well-being. don’t set yourself up to fail!

  22. Kudos Ben! Part of being at home for me does include getting to the housework. I split my week working in and out of the house. My husband does a lot of cleaning when he gets home from work when he’s not too tired. When I have the kids it’s not my primary focus. Although I do want my kids to clean up after themselves like human beings. That being said…Hubs coming home is the marker for me that my work day is also done. I want to feel like I’m on top of the housework instead of drowning in it. To have the house tidy, dinner on the way and the counters clean makes me happy. It’s a bonus if I can set the Roomba to go, put in a load of laundry and run the dishwasher. The only thing I do sometimes if I feel behind is quickly set the table. I can do this in the few seconds it takes for him to start opening the garage door and walk inside. It gives the illusion that something is on the way even if I haven’t even thought about dinner and it’s about to be a “lets order sushi (again) night”. He’s happier and I’m happier because I don’t have to deal with any judgemental questions about how I spent my day. (I spent it constantly nursing a teething baby, being used by my toddler as a human Kleenex, painting rocks, being a doctor, cook, teacher, cleaning lady, coach, etiquette instructor, personal assistant and business owner.) Any questions?*drops mike and walks out*

  23. Is article for real?? I could have sworn that this was lifted from some 1950’s publication somewhere. Do women and men still really think and live this way?? I work a “job” as does my wife (who works from home as an RN), and she also runs a successful business out of the home as well. I LOVE hearing about her day, and her work, and my sons day, and guess what…?? I dont EXPECT the house to be totally clean and sparkling when i get home, i KNOW she works her ass off daily and tries to do it all, and I appreciate and love her for it, and if some chore around the house needs to be done… well, then I just “man up” and do it, or I ask her what she needs help with. Running a household as a partnership, just like any other relationship, it takes 2 people to communicate, and work TOGETHER to make it work. This is the dumbest article I have read in a very long time.

    1. I’m sorry you missed the important point of this post, Peter … it’s intended for stay-at-home moms who don’t work from home or away from home.

      Typically stay-at-home moms view their job as caring for their home and family. And it’s hard work. Sometimes, as a stay-at-home mom, you want to have an idea of something quick to do to straighten up your house – so I gave an example of what works for me in my own home.

      I can assure you that my home is not totally clean and sparkling when my husband gets home every day. He knows I’m hard at work throughout my day and that I try to do it all … and he appreciates and loves me for it. I completely agree with you that when you’re married, running a household is a partnership. My husband helps out, and neither of us would ever expect for me to do all of the work in our home. We work TOGETHER. But most days, I try to show him kindness and respect by doing what I know he likes, and what I would also like to see if I worked away from the home.

      1. Well explained Hilary. If my husband and I shared a paid job (not literally, i mean we both worked) i would expect us to both share the housework. But as a SAHM, who does not have a paid job, I feel that the majority of the daily work is down to me. My husband does do a lot of stuff in the house, but I don’t feel like it should be his job every day.

    2. I love your reply Peter! Yes there are housework tips, but the big focus of this article is the housebeing satifactory for when the man comes home.quite ridiculous.

  24. I’m a “temporary” stay at home Mom, home on maternity leave taking care of our newborn second child. It has been rough this last few months making the transition from full-time working outside the home to full-time working within the home – I have much respect for those that SAH all the time.

    This post totally spoke to me, even though there are no expectations on my husband’s part about what I have or have not “accomplished” during the day. There are days that he comes home to a hot dinner, a clean house and well-behaved kids; and days when he comes home to chaos and no food in the cupboards. I have noticed that we all feel better and have better evenings when the house is tidier when my husband and our oldest get home. Doing quick tidying up or getting dinner started make me feel more accomplished and ready to greet my family when they return home. I usually concentrate on general tidying of the living room and the kitchen, although today I swept and tidied the front foyer and my husband noticed it as soon as he walked in, so I think I’ll take a minute or two every other day or so to make sure it’s tidied.

  25. When my husband was a SAHD I was very clear in laying out my expectations: His job was to be there for the children; the house was a joint responsibility. Having said that, I loved it when I came home and dinner was made and the house was more-or-less tidy. Now that I’m a SAHM I do a good job of keeping the house tidy – Of course it helps that the kids are in school now, and not little and under-foot! I still think the house is a joint responsibility; but I have more time to clean, and my standards are higher. (He grew up in a home that wasn’t terribly clean. At various times they had an inside pig, inside goats, and inside lambs, which all made for fascinating pets, but also a messy home.) I’ve told him recently that he has to step up his game though, after my daughter told me that “I’ll have to do more housework than my brother when I’m grown up because daddies don’t do housework.” That is NOT a message we want to send her; so he’s been better at pulling his weight!

  26. Thank you for the encouragement!

    I was the perfect wife before I was married and the perfect mom before I had kids.
    Experience, wisdom and perspective are important.

  27. Its definitely alot harder to make sure the house is clean before my husband comes home now but two years ago we only had our daughter and my husband also worked until 11 at night so i would just not mess with the house all day and get to enjoy spending time with my daughter and clean up after she went to bed. But now my daughter is almost 4 and we also have a 7 month old little boy and my husband comes home at 3 so with all of the craziness that goes on its extremely difficult to get the house looking nice. But my husband is awesome he used to get upset and not understand what i do all day and how i couldnt get anything done. He realized how defeated i felt so now instead of getting upset hell just start cleaning up for me with out me even asking him to. It makes me feel guilty that after working 5am to 3pm he comes home and feels like he has to do house work but i do try my best for him

  28. I know exactly where you’re coming from! In true Flylady style, I set a 15-minute timer and empty the dishwasher, which rarely takes more than 5 minutes if the Littles are already in bed or occupied. Then I clear the sink for another 10 minutes. If I don’t finish within my 15 minutes, I either have a better place to keep outstanding dirty dishes or its only a matter of a few extra minutes to finish the job.

    From there I’ll reset the timer for 5-10 minutes and tackle the next trainwreck that would offer the biggest impact, usually picking up toys.

    IF I have time, I’ll start a load of laundry washing so it’s ready to dry by the morning. Once I start this and the dishwasher running, I feel like I’ve already accomplished more legit housework within 30 minutes than I have all day!!

    At this point I can chillax with a cup of tea (and get a cup ready for the hubs’!) and/or wipe down countertops and the dining table.

    I really respond well to a timer (Flylady, pomodoro..), and I find my task rarely takes as long as I thought that it would. I give myself permission to walk away from the task at the buzzer or Pinterest for the remaining unused time. :)

    1. I love your idea about using a timer and any remaining time spent on something “fun”. I agree that things rarely take as long as you think they will and being able to earn fun time would be a good incentive to come up with even more efficient ways to do things. I’m about to be a first time mom and a stay at home mom and I’m pretty nervous but also Really excited. I hope I’m up for the challenge.

  29. Honestly I hope I can marry a man who understands that raising kids is hard and knows our house won’t always be clean, and who is okay with coming home and seeing me doing something other than tidying. Someone who values my working hard even if it doesn’t look like much.
    If I were working wife to a stay at home dad, I wouldn’t expect him to do everything you’ve listed above. I really do like these cleaning & childcare tips (educational videos from the library! perfect way to keep kids occupies and learning!) but also, as long as there’s honesty and love in a marriage, I wouldn’t mind a messy house.

  30. I’ve noticed since I did the KonMari method, my house is much easier to keep clean. Even with three little ones! I suggest it. It’s so much easier for me to keep up with the housework

  31. I used to obsess over the perfect house and having it clean for my husband. When he didn’t really seem to take much notice on the days that I didn’t do such a good job I began to realize that acts of service was one of my love languages, not his. He would much rather that I be ready to spend some quality time with him when he gets home, then have me be burnt out from taking care of 4 littles all day and trying to make sure the house is perfect.
    I do take keeping up the house as part of my “job” since I don’t work outside of the home, but I know the value that my husband sees in me staying home is in my care for the children so they don’t have to be shipped of to some daycare or a relative. They are at home with their momma who is loving on them, teaching them, caring for them, and bonding with them in a way that no one but a parent could. If I was married to someone who didn’t see the value in that I might worry that we were facing much bigger issues than if the dishwasher got unloaded or not.

  32. My husband works Fire/EMS and Medical Transport, so he works just about every day except 3 Sundays a month. I am a SAHM to our nine children, including 18 month old twin tornadoes. I also homeschool all but our youngest two, and we do martial arts, library trips, etc. I do what I can with the house, of course I want it clean, but THANKFULLY my husband has NEVER insinuated that I didn’t do anything all day, even when we only had 1 or 2 babies for me to care for! How insulting, rude, and unloving! You know what my husband does? He comes home on the two out of three nights that he’s home, he loves on his kids, he cuts the grass and does outside stuff, and if he sees something that needs to be done inside, wait for it…. HE DOES IT! Imagine that. I feel like the luckiest woman in the world after reading this article and these comments.

    1. Plus, I’m a stay at home MOM. The kids are my “job,” not the house. Of course I do more in the house than my husband does just because I’m here more, but it’s still equal responsibility. I signed up as a SAHM to raise my kids, not to be the only one responsible for keeping the house tidy. I’m so thankful that my husband would rather us work together when he’s home to get the house shipshape so we can the both relax together after the kids are in bed, than relax alone while I do all the housework. I’m all for serving my husband, don’t get me wrong. He goes out and serves people all day long. He’s got a servant’s heart, maybe that makes all the difference. I do what I can, but in our home having a perfectly tidy home every day isn’t practical, and he recognizes that, and he also recognizes that the house is OUR responsibility, and I am the weaker vessel, and in turn serves me and loves me like Christ loves the Church.

      1. I think there is a great difference between a stay at home mom, housewife, and homemaker. You can be on or all three.
        Stay at home mom SAHM is mostly focused on the kids. Many times they homeschool which takes much time up depending on the number of kids. Either way housework is not the main goal.
        Housewife is someone who may or may not have children but is married and spends her days “working” from home. If she has kids, they are most likely her number one “job” but having a tidy house makes everyone more relaxed so she does that as well.
        Homemaker is some one who makes the home, feel like home. Keeping up with daily tasks, decorating, cleaning, preparing, etc.
        It all depends on the individual, and what they want out of theirselves. I am a housewife and homemaker. My kids come first during the day but I make time to make sure my husband feels comfortable and welcome when he gets home. I want him to look forward to being with us not dred it. In MY MIND not his, I feel if the house is in chaos, kids are wild, and nothing is at least planned for supper then he will feel the chaos I feel and not be happy. Of course on those days he jumps right in, after doing his farm chores AFTER his regular job, and helps me all he can. But on days he comes home and I have all in order, he can go straight to enjoying our 5 kids and time with me. It’s all about balance. Hope that makes since.

  33. I think there is something to be said for creating a peaceful/clean environment for your spouse. Each one should participate in some way. I come from a background where this is encouraged and I enjoy making things nice for my family. However, if there is a lack of appreciation, and also reciprocation, it can be discouraging. It all depends on the couple and how well they care for each other.

  34. I absolutely love this and so appreciate this article! I have a hard time deciding how to handle everything right before my husband gets home… 3 children under 2.5 is a contributing factor. This is SO PRACTICAL and SO HELPFUL! Thank you for the insight and giving me motivation towards a different perspective allowing me to feel less overwhelmed.

    1. I am so glad you appreciate it, Shannon! I hope it will help a lot in your days … and with your motivation and perspective!

  35. It amazes me how many nasty comments there are here insinuating your husband comes home and demands an accounting of your time. You clearly state that he politely asks about your day, which is the same thing anyone would do when they greet a family member. Don’t they ask their spouse how their day at work went? Many days, I’ve nothing interesting to share about work – the same boring tasks, or feeling like little was accomplished even though I worked all day. I’m sure it’s the same for those who are SAHMs. What could possibly be offensive about spending a couple minutes doing something you know your spouse will appreciate? What is the point of being so measly with kindness when it comes to your own spouse?

  36. Love these tips!! I’m a full-time WFH mom and my little ones are in daycare just part-time, so life can definitely be hectic. My girls and I ALWAYS clean before leaving for the day. They put all their toys away and I clean the kitchen and do any laundry that needs to be taken care of. We get back around 1:30 and it’s nap time for them and more work time for me. Once they’re up for the day, I start dinner and they play. Again, before bedtime, we clean. They’ve actually gotten really good at keeping their toys picked up — to the point where most days I don’t have to ask/nag them. I think kids secretly enjoy a clean home as well :)

    Thank you for the post!! Very fun read!

    -Sarah http://www.thefrugalmillionaireblog.com

  37. I’m not sure I love the title of this article. But it does bring about a point that most SAHM think about (that is what do you like to do before your significant other gets home. Being a SAHM mom during the weekdays (work 24hrs night shift during the weekend), I do try to make it a routine to get chores done. Mostly, I do it for myself though. I’ve realized early on that a cleaner house meant a less frazzled me. I know my husband never minded if I couldn’t get the dishes done or dinner cooked because I was dealing with a sick baby all day, or I was just too busy with the kids. I know that he appreciated it more when I was a calmer wife. Also, I realized that the more chores I could get done, meant more quality family time with the kids and with each other. Another incentive to keep the house clean and dinner ready.
    First thing I usually did when we woke up (630ish) was feed the kids, change their outfits and get a little play time. Then I would let them watch some tv while I got my coffee/breakfast ready and morning dishes washed. At some point during the day (usually mid morning naps), I’d put a load of laundry in the wash (the folding was usually done whenever I could squeeze it in). Then from lunchtime (1130 to 530) is just about them. I pick up toys and straighten out the play area around 530. Then I’d usually start dinner.
    A few things that have worked for me have been- one day a week I went food shopping (I always did a meal menu so shopping would be quick, easy, also avoids unnecessary expenses and thinking all week of what to do for dinner).
    I also did pot roast Fridays since I could set the crock pot for my family to have a meal before I left for work.
    Overall, having some type of routine usually helped me to get things done without feeling too overwhelmed. At the end of the day, there’s always a chore you could think of doing, but sometimes, just being able to spend time with the entire family is the most important “chore”. ????

  38. I agree with everything you’ve said. My husband (the Redneck) comes home at 3:45 a.m., so I have had the time to clean and do everything before he gets home. My routine is to set my phone alarm for 3:30 a.m. When t goes off, I get up, straighten the bed, brush my hair and teeth, and wait in the living room for him. When it was warm, I sat on the porch in the dark, praying. Now that winter’s here, I sit by the front window, and when I see his truck lights, I open the door and go outside to welcome him home. We talk for a while, then go to sleep.

    1. Your comment brings tears to my eyes, Evelyn, because I think it’s just amazing that you set your alarm every night to wake up at 3:30 in the morning to welcome your husband home from work! Your husband is a blessed man.

  39. One of the most important things I do before my husband gets home from work is cook a nice home cooked meal from scratch. I try and have all the prep dishes cleaned and put away and the table set and ready to serve dinner. I also like to do a quick scan and tidy up of any clutter, as well as making sure the children are settled doing a quiet activity. Then whenever possible, when he gets home I greet him at the door with a big smile and a hug. ????❤️

  40. One thing that worked out well for us … when my husband came home I would hand the baby or toddler off to him then I would get a much needed shower! I did not feel comfortable leaving my daughter alone while it was just the two of us. This way I could enjoy a shower, know that she was safe and my husband loved his alone time with her. After the shower I would start dinner. Oh and we loved to watch “The Comfy Couch” on PBS when I needed a few minutes to pick up the clutter. Generally that 30 minute block was all I needed to get everything back in order.

    1. Ooh, I love this idea, Jennifer! Juggling real, everyday life with infants and toddlers is so difficult. What a great idea to tag-team with your husband once he got home from work!

  41. My reply is a bit different than most. I was a SAHM for 25 years with 6 kids. I almost always had everything in perfect order before my husband came home. Unfortunately because I was so efficient he got to thinking that what I did took only a short time and all I must have done all day was play. In retrospect now as a grandma, I wish I had let a few things slide and not been so good at keeping things up so he could really appreciate how much I really did do. So my advice is to do the best you can but when you can’t it is ok. Then your husband will value you as a real person, not some kind of Stepford wife.

  42. So what tips do you have for those of us who choose to work outside our homes? I carpool, with my husband, to our medical practice every day. We come home with our children together. We work as a team in all that we do! This blog makes your husbands seem like they’re trapped in 1950.

  43. I love this! I get a lot of complaining from friends and familu about doing too much as a SAHM, worrying about keeping the house clean for my husband and what not. But what those friends and family fail to understand is that when my husband comes home to a tidy house, it is like a clean slate for our family’s evening. It allows us to focus more on each other and not the mess and stress of our days.

    1. Yes!! I love your description of a clean slate for your family’s evening. Mess can add so much stress and distraction, doesn’t it?

  44. I have to say that this is the best “ideal housewife” article that I’ve read. This sounds silly but for a few days I’ve been looking up how to be a “happy homemaker”. I don’t want it to come across that I’m miserable and totally devestated with my life, but I have two young children (1 day exactly away from being a year apart), we were married after our children were born and I always felt a little… behind. My husband works as a third shift supervisor, he think that I deserve to sleep as long as the kids are and a lot of the time if the kids get up he let’s me keep sleeping! When he wakes up late in the afternoon, it is complete chaos. But I found hope in this article! I’m thrilled that I’m not the only Mom who uses the TV for a few minutes of quiet time to get some things done :) So I wanted to personally thank you for this, it has already helped and motivated me so much <3

  45. Are you kidding me? Is this the step ford wives? Do you really recommend to downgrade yourself to the cleaning help? Is that all you were created to do?
    And if you do this blog as business then you need time to that as well. Hire a cleaner and a babysitter and you will get your life back. Or clean up together. They are both your kids right? This is ridiculous. Sorry.

    1. Right? Welcome to 1950. He will still grab my ass and tell me I’m sexy in sweatpants and a messy house. Work on your relationship.

  46. I no longer have little ones underfoot but one thing i do is i light a fragrance candle in the foyer 30 min before my husband or guest arrive. It sets the stage at the get go.

  47. Hahahahahha. Did this article get written straight out of 1950? He can have supper made and loud kids with a happy/stressed/whatever wife. He will survive. And a good husband comes home and pitches in. Its 2018.

  48. I greatly appreciate this. I need to switch my day around and do my cleaning in the afternoon rather than in the morning. ????‍♀️ I feel like ans amateur, 5 kids and 10 years in, haha! For those who are hating on this, why did you even read this blog post? And ignore if you are all for women being able to have equal rights and be whoever they want, so whatever they want and are a true feminist then shame on you! You are the type of women that tear other women down, not empower them as you should. If you make the choice to be CEO of a big company I am so happy for your accomplishments and way to show the world that women CAN do whatever they want. But that is no reason to shame someone for their desire to be a great housewife and homemaker. Can we not take pride in our “job” and share how we got the results and accomplishments we thrive for? Is it to much to ask, to be treated a little better from you, our fellow empowering women? Hello it’s 2018! Thought you wanted women to have choices!!

  49. Sighhhhhh……..Beth (September 23, 2018 at 8:46 am), I’d love to reach right into this computer and HUG you. You hit the nail right on the head!

    My kids are all grown up, and my husband’s gone, but I STILL came away with something positive from this blog- because I CHOSE TO. It caused me to spend the evening looking up ideas on how to get more organized/less cluttered, and acted as a reminder to me that I feel less stressed when my home (and all my crazy craft supplies) are more organized. Thank you, Hilary for sharing! God Bless every effort you make to better this world, whether people are able to recognize it for what it is- or not.

  50. I have no idea what the year has to do with cleaning up your house? I am a stay at home mom with 4 children. My husband has a super strenuous career and is on call 24/7 unless he takes vacation. He can work 40 hour shifts at a time and then go back in only after 4 hours of sleep. I do all the cleaning, laundry, dishes, etc. I also get ready every day…makeup, hair fixed. It just makes me feel better. I do most of the housework during the day but save the vacuuming and mopping until right before he comes home. Makes the house smell fresh and if the older kids track anything in the house after I pick them up from school I can clean it up.

  51. Seriously!! Your husband needs to look after his wife and family better when he gets home rather than expecting to be treated like some hero for going to work for the day.

  52. What a wonderful Artikel.
    It’s so nice to read, because it’s so out of the Day. You`re not writing, that everything in your life is perfect – perfect children, perfect home, perfect play time and to the playground in the afternoon. I respectet Woman, who get this – but most of the time it sounds like “Uh, I couldn’t wrote how my day really is, because then all will think bad about me; so I imagine my perfect day and wrote about that.”

    If try, if I could, to do a little cleaning before he comes. Most of the Day, I clean, even with two little children at home. So they could play “alone” (without mommy overwatching everything an complaning about what they shouldn’t do. *smile*). And when they need or want me, I come and play with them, took them to bed etc.
    House is cleaner, mommy lesser stressed out and the children learning to interact with eachother; finding there own way to play with there toys. =)
    And yes – sometimes my children just watch TV. So what?`- They are healthy, loved children with much more Fantasie like I sometimes. So I think, everythink is ok.

    PS: Often before my Husband comes Home, I try to make my clothes look clean, do my hair and maybe lay a bit of make – up on. I’m thinking: When I do it for complete Strangers – why I don’t do it for the Ones I love?

  53. Thanks for sharing! Tidying up for daddy daily is a great way to teach and prepare them to help tidy up when guests are coming over!

  54. How many of these naysayers understand the sacrifices that are often made so that one parent can stay home? Might have to give up the newer cars and fancy vacations? If you can stay at home, then you can get your ducks in a row and have things under control when the other spouse gets home after being away. Yes, being a stay at home parent is a real job and you should treat it as such. I didn’t resent getting up early to make my husband breakfast and pack his lunch. If I was tired, I could always go back to bed when he was gone. He had a hard job and plenty of travel time to provide financially for us. My job was to provide meals, clean laundry, clean home and take care of children. I did laundry for 5 people in a twin tub washer that took up the tiny kitchen for most of Monday. Including diapers! I did not have my own vehicle to go shopping, play dates etc. I don’t know what y’all are complaining about. Picking up was done and supper organized before he got home. Like many others, I see it as a sign of respect. He did ask me once what I did all day and to put it in writing to him to see when he got home. Having three children under five and two still in diapers, I had a full day. He never asked again LOL

  55. This article is crazy in my opinion. I have 3 children ages 3 and under, including a nursling who is VERY needy day and night. I am the SOLE person providing care for my children 6 days a week, 12 hours a day. On the rare occasion I can get all three children to nap simultaneously, I too lay down and close my eyes for 30 minutes or so because I’m exhausted from aforementioned nursling waking me 3-5x a night. No my house is not perfect, but I certainly hope in a few years it looks much better than it does now most days. Have multiple very small children is an utterly exhausting, mentally draining life to live. I prepare every single meal and snack that goes into my children’s mouths. On my husband’s day off I beg for help supervising the children so I can deep clean, but he often has something on his agenda he would rather do. So then when the house doesn’t get deep cleaned, he complains about. All while not providing critical help supervising the children so it can be done. This sounds like an article he would write.

  56. If you don’t like this post don’t read it. Apparently you know everything anyways. Clap clap clap.

    As for me I have enough respect for my family to ttrryyy and pick up before dad comes home. Oh my god I’m a 1950’s housewife. ????. No ladies I’m a woman of current times who guess what respects her partner. Respects her home! And takes pride in her and her households appearance.

    Haters just go away. We do out number you ????

  57. All these woman saying how old fashioned this thinking is, you should be embarrassed. First off, what you’re referring to is a time when woman weren’t really allowed to work. A time when they were expected to only have kids, cook, and clean. A time when, basically, if you wanted a husband you HAD to do those things.
    What you – very rude – ladies don’t understand, is no where in this blog did she say she HAD to do anything. She wants to do it, because it’s something her husband likes. It’s what works for their family. Bet these same people being rude are the same ones who would call out a man who was slacking at work and not making as much as he should to provide for his family. This is how this mom providers for her family and she doesn’t seem to be slacking.
    I feel really bad for the husband married to someone who’s mindset is “who cares what your husband thinks”.

  58. No thanks. I’m glad I have a PARTNER who understands the work I do, and sometimes that includes messes or dinner not being prepared, because I’m taking care of OUR child. Done with this 50’s style garbage. Even thrown my pearls, pumps, and petticoats away.

  59. I’ve been a stay at home mom for 17years. During this time when my kids were little I babysat my nieces/nephew (4 of them) for many many years I had six kids under the age of 10 at home just about full time.
    I have always tried to have the house clean/tidy when my husband comes home. When the kids were young he helped out a lot more. He would vacuum, do laundry really whatever I would need done when he got home he would do. He’s always been extremely helpful. Most of the time when they were younger I could have the house tidy and begin making dinner by the time he got home. Which I did not only for him but for myself. I really love a clean home. But I would say with little kids it’s hard and 30% of the time he came home he would have to pick up a chore again 6 kids under 10 most days.
    Now that my kids are older and I no longer babysit it’s a walk in the park. I usually clean my whole house before noon and spend the rest of the day doing yard work, odd n end tasks or hanging out with my teens. Dinner is always ready to go and my husband never has to pick up extra chores for me when he gets home. But again I have teens.
    I don’t see this article that you wrote as making women less then their husband or bring women back to the 1950s. I think if I’m lucky enough this day and age to stay home I should be respectful enough to do my part. Sure I’m doing the more important job raising humans but without my husbands job I wouldn’t have the luxury of doing my job full time. Just an opinion on a mom who’s been in the game for a while.

  60. It doesn’t matter if your partner is a man or a woman, treating your partner lovingly anyway you know how-Makes your relationship better. You don’t have to change the world. There isn’t a rule book. Make your own rules and have a great life!

  61. I am a mother of three and during my first marriage I was not “allowed” to stay home with my two eldest children. I worked the same 40 hour work week as my husband and still did the lions share of the housework and chores. Now in my second marriage and third child, I have offered to work and help out financially but my husband sees the value of me staying home with our son. To say I am grateful for the opportunity to raise my son rather than carting him off to daycare each day would be an understatement. My husband doesn’t have to provide for us and I don’t have to stay home but it works for us. So yes I do try and make sure my husband is relaxed and comfortable when he gets home because he is giving this gift to our entire family of a SAHM. Its not an old fashioned notion. It’s give and take. He is giving of his time and energy to drag himself out of bed at 1 am every morning, working 12 hour shifts so that our family can benefit from a mother and wife that can be present. If that’s old fashioned well then count me in. Love is love and he deserves that and more.

  62. My husband is happy when he comes through the door because his day is done and he gets to see me and his family, Dirty house or clean house. Shouldn’t that be the case? We decide what to eat together, make food together etc… when the house looks immaculate its because we spent the morning tidying up together. It’s time well spent. We have lots of amazing conversations over folding laundry. I’m a stay at home wife. Sometimes he worked Sometimes I worked. How much money we earn doesn’t determine who gets to come home to a clean house. I don’t work. I am my husband’s confidante and lover and spiritual partner navigating this life. We strive for a christ centered home and teach our children the value of being in service to others. Not everyone has the same priorities. And we should respect others way of living. I feel sometimes when someone has a strong opinion (especially women about life in the 50s and feminism.) It comes from a place of love and concern. We are not perfect. And won’t be. Ever lol. But we try to understand the best we can. And share our point of view in the kindest way possible when we feel prompted

  63. This blog has great tips! As a stay at home mama, homeschooler and a babysitter for another little one, I have my hands completely full at times but I also have breaks throughout the day! My husband is always happy to help out at our home if I ask. With that being said, he gets up at 4 am to go to work to financially support myself and our three little girls. He works so hard to give us the life we deserve so I do my part to give him the life he deserves! It’s all about mutual respect! If I had a hard day he is more than willing to lend a hand, if I had time though out the day you best believe I’m getting the house clean! I think it’s important to teach our kids to clean up after ourselves once a mess is made. By no means is my house spotless by the way! But we each have our responsibilities as a part of a family and I think that plays a huge role in maintaining a healthy family life. I think this just so happens to be a more traditional family set up but if I was the one working out of the house and my husband was home with the girls I would want him teaching them to clean and be active through the day versus watching tv, playing video games or social media. I have also learned keeping a tidy house and a daily schedule keeps me feeling best mentally. Staying at home is really hard if you don’t have structure or responsibilities to keep you busy.

  64. “the very quick clean-up was a practical way to show my husband I was thinking of him and that I appreciate him.” I surely hope that he does these quick clean ups for you as well. Cleans his dishes, put his laundry away and picks up his dirty underwear.

    1. Oh, he definitely does! Aside from helping with the dishes and other chores, most nights he makes dinner for the family, which is a lifesaver and such a relief on busy days.

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